While the star power of the injury report diverts attention to the likes of Tyreek Hill, Chris Jones and Sammy Watkins, the Chiefs’ offensive line is enduring its own absences.
Left tackle Eric Fisher is set to miss a fourth straight week after surgery for a sports hernia. And guard Andrew Wylie is doubtful to play Sunday with an ankle injury suffered last weekend against Indianapolis.
Who’s up next? To be determined.
But a man who has spent all of four days on the Chiefs’ roster might be part of the answer. Kansas City added guard Stefen Wisniewski to the mix on Tuesday. Wisniewski is a nine-year veteran who spent training camp with Philadelphia before the Eagles cut him.
“I’m really excited. I came from an Andy Reid-style program in Philly, which is what (Eagles coach and former Reid assistant) Doug Pederson tried to implement there. I’ve heard great things about Andy. I have a lot of respect for him and his program,” Wisniewski said.
“I’ve heard great things about this organization. Just as a fan of football, I’ve been watching this team and impressed with all the talent they’ve got here.”
After his release in Philadelphia, Wisniewski spent the past five weeks working out at Penn State, his alma mater, hoping to get another shot in the NFL.
“I’m in good shape,” he said.
The call finally came earlier this week after Wylie’s injury. And now, the Chiefs could opt for a like-for-like replacement on the offensive line, plugging in a player who has spent time with three NFL teams — Oakland, Jacksonville and Philadelphia.
“Smart guy for sure. Picked it up fast,” Reid said of Wisniewski’s first week of practice in Kansas City. “Played some scout team (during practice this week) and worked in the rotation. ... He was able to get in there and didn’t make a lot of mistakes.”
Wisniewski is one option to fill Wylie’s spot on the line. Another: The Chiefs could turn instead to Martinas Rankin, whom they acquired from this weekend’s opponent — Houston — in a trade for running Carlos Hyde in late August. If Rankin is the choice, he could spot at left tackle, where he’s more comfortable, a move that would shift Erving inside.
Erving struggled during the Chiefs’ loss to the Colts last Sunday.
“(Rankin) has gone a good job,” Reid said. “He’s been good for us. We’re confident in him that he can play.”